Chief Operating Officer, K2M, Inc.
Emerging Leader Nominee
1. Why do you believe CSR is an important part of your personal brand?
At K2M, corporate social responsibility is an integral element to how we approach business. It is true that companies often depend upon the support of local communities and stakeholders in order to thrive. That said, this relationship is always reciprocal and require that companies direct their efforts to promote social good in the community, as well as around the world, regardless of reward or profit.
Because K2M’s primary business objectives are directed toward improving the lives of people who suffer from spinal deformities, it is only natural that our organization would look to other ways to make the world a better place. We do this through a wide range of philanthropic efforts, all of which make us who we are as a company.
2. Do you believe that the CSR work you participate in should be affiliated with the work you/your company does?
A company’s commitment to corporation social responsibility should be partially related to the work that the company does, but not entirely so. For instance, our long-term relationship with Every Citizen Has Opportunities (ECHO) provides a sense of purpose for people with significant mental and physical disabilities in the Northern Virginia region. That said, we remain focused on philanthropic efforts within the spinal surgery area, such as helping to found FOCOS Hospital in Ghana, and providing spinal devices to victims of the Nepal earthquake, as well as supporting various spinal advocacy organizations, like the Scoliosis Research Society.
3. Do you believe contributing back to the community allows you to have a deeper connection with your clients/customers?
K2M was founded with a goal of improving the lives of patients suffering from the most complicated spinal pathologies. Since the beginning, we have positioned philanthropy as a cornerstone of our approach to business.
Our employees are strong advocates for giving back to the community through a diverse range of philanthropic efforts. These include:
- Boulder Crest Retreat Foundation
- Dulles Fraternal Order of Police
- Dulles Plane Pull
- FOCOS Orthopaedic Hospital that we helped found in Ghana
- Foxcroft School STEM Program
- Gbomai Bestman Foundation
- Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation
- Liberians Against Ebola, Inc.
- Loudoun Citizens for Social Justice
- Loudoun County Fair
- Loudoun County Public Schools
- Loudoun Good Shepherd Alliance
- Loudoun Habitat For Humanity
- Loudoun Hunger Relief
- Loudoun Small Business Development
- Loudoun Youth, Inc.
- Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy
- Madeira School Co-curriculum Program
- Marine Corps Foundation Scholarship
- Marine Toys for Tots Foundation
- Smashing Walnuts Foundation
- Special Olympics Virginia
- Straight 2 Swimming
- The Arc of Northern Virginia
4. What are some events or causes that inspire you?
K2M’s commitment to social good begins in Loudoun County – our global headquarters – as well as at a national and global level. One example is the FOCOS Hospital we helped found in Ghana, a nonprofit organization that provides comprehensive, affordable orthopedic care to those in need in sub-Sahara Africa and who would not otherwise have access to such treatment. The fact that our products are used to treat the world’s most challenging deformity cases inspires us each day.
5. What advice would you give to individuals trying to find a cause in which to participate?
I recommend getting employees involved and giving them a voice. Employees will be more passionate about CSR activities if they are personally passionate about the organizations they’re working with and the people they’re supporting. Giving them a voice in creating the company’s CSR strategy and in identifying organizations and charities in which to focus the company’s efforts keeps them active, passionate and involved.